How to beat Chronos in Hades 2

How to beat Chronos in Hades 2
Tom Bardwell Updated on by

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Killing time. That’s Melinoe’s task when she squares up to Chronos, the Titan of Time. He’s the one responsible for this whole mess and a right thorn in even the most smooth flowing runs in Hades 2, but a rite of passage if you’re gunning for the credits. Hecate, Scylla, and Infernal Cerberus feel like minor tussles compared to the frenetic pace and attacks of the Chronos boss fight.

The difficulty is doubled up because to reach Chronos, you’ll have to repeatedly carve a path through Erebus, Oceanus, and the Mourning Fields before finally making it into Tartarus, a trap-filled maze of claustrophobic rooms. It’s a frustrating final boss, but we’ll walk you through how to beat Chronos to make it a little easier to stomach.

Hades 2 Chronos boss guide: dark figure sitting a throne in a dark arena sided by two minions with a tapestry in the background.
Killing time. Captured by VideoGamer.

Chronos move list

Below, you’ll find a complete list of Chronos’ moveset. Hades 2 doesn’t have official names for each of Chronos’ attacks so we’ve made up our own for clarity. Overall, it’s the toughest fight Early Access has to offer so far; it’s varied, fast-paced, and dishes out massive damage to Melinoe. The screen gets cluttered real quick, but after a few attempts you should get a sense of his movement and tells so that you can take early evasive action and stay safe long enough to deplete his health bar.

MoveDescriptionStrategyPhase
Scythe SlashChronos slashes his scythe in a short radius in front of him. The move is telegraphed by Chronos raising his scythe above his left shoulder just before the attack.Dodge away from Chronos.Phase 1
BoomerangChronos throws his scythe in a circle around himself with the weapon spinning on itself like a boomerang. Watch for Chronos charging the move by pulling the scythe over his right shoulder.Dash towards Chronos to avoid the scythe.Phase 1
DashChronos dashes as Melinoe before hitting her with his scythe. The move is telegraphed by Chronos charging for a brief moment before dashing. Look out for the glowing light as he dashes and dodge to the left or right.Phase 1
DomeChronos creates a protective dome around himself that stuns Melinoe if she’s caught inside. The tell for this move is Chronos spinning on himself.Stay away from the dome.Phase 1
Orb RingChronos spawns a ring of orbs around himself then dashes at Melinoe. He’ll spin on himself briefly before the orbs appear.Watch for the dash then dodge out of the way.Phase 1
Minion SummonChronos summons several enemies to fight alongside him. Chronos cocoons in a shield before the minions appear.Defeat the Satyrs as quickly as possible. Use Cast to immobilise them.Phase 1
WhirlwindChronos creates a line whirlwind that tracks Melinoe and pulls her in if she’s caught inside it. Chronos spins his scythe in front of him before the whirlwind appears.Sprint as far away from Chronos as possible out of range of the cyclone.Phase 1
FlagsChronos summons four flags around the arena that grant him and any minions a shield. Chronos spins slowly before hitting the ground. Destroy all four flags.Destroy all four flags.Phase 1
Closing CircleChronos casts a ring that starts at the edge of the arena working its way inwards.Dash out of the ring as it nears the center of the arena.Phase 2
ClockChronos summons a massive clock at the center of the arena causing damage to Melinoe if she’s not in the safe ring.Stay in the clock’s safe outer band.Phase 2
Crossed BeamsChronos summons several static jagged golden beams, either four shaped like a cross, or a dozen, shaped like a compass.Dash or sprint away from the beams.Phase 2
SlowChronos traps Melinoe in a time cocoon, slowing her movement.Unavoidable.Phase 2
Safe NumberA safe number will glow in the arena. Shortly after, the rest of the arena explodes.Dash to the highlighted safe number and stay there until the attack ends.Phase 2
OrbsChronos summons rotating orbs that move at different speeds.Stay on the edge of the arena and dash away from any incoming orbs.Phase 2
Clock HandsChronos produces one or two golden clock hands that move around the arena clockwise.Dash through the hands and follow them clockwise until the attack ends.Phase 2
Hourglass SummonChronos summons several Hourglass enemies that will attack Melinoe.Use Cast to immobilise them then focus your attacks on Chronos.Phase 2
Hades 2 Chronos boss guide: four characters in a dimly lit arena with a tapestry on the wall and a compass on the floor.
Calm before the storm. Captured by VideoGamer.

Chronos boss fight strategy

The general strategy when taking on Chronos is patience and caution. Unlike Hecate, Scylla, and Cerberus, which are fairly forgiving to aggressive play styles, Chronos will penalise brashness. Greed typically means death. If you can avoid most of his attacks and get in hits when it’s safe to do so, his HP bar should thin down pretty quickly. Surviving long enough is the real challenge here. Though not a golden rule, sprinting and dashing towards him should avoid the majority of his attacks. 

As a general rule, clear out any minions he summons as a priority. They clog up the arena and take your attention away from Chronos’ moves so are best dealt with quickly. Cast works well to keep them pinned in one spot while you take them out. Typically, he won’t throw out too many attacks when you’re fighting minions, especially if you’re on the other side of the arena. When the four flags pop up mid-phase 1, make sure to destroy them as quickly as possible, otherwise they’ll grant Chronos and his minions a shield that reduces your damage.

Due to Chronos’ movelist, he’s vulnerable from the back, so alternate between a safe distance to give yourself space to read and dodge attacks, and sprinting in behind him to quickly deal damage. His main weakness is a lack of range and mobility other than his dash, which is well-telegraphed. It’s worth taking the time to learn the radius of his attacks and then positioning yourself just out of reach, but close enough to dash for your own attacks.

✓ Don’t Pause

Try and pause during the fight and Chronos won’t let you, you know, him being the god of time and all. Thanks Supergiant.

Try and keep as many Death Defiances as long as possible as you’ll need them for phase 2. For phase 2, luck plays it’s part, but there are several steps you can take to give yourself a better chance. First and foremost, get a sense of how the arena plays into the fight. Track safe and danger zones marked on the ground. Aim for the safe number marked on the floor before the damage comes.

Once you nail this little dance, play aggressively, dashing, casting, and attacking as often as possible. Use your Hex move whenever possible. The phase is pure chaos and the main goal is to get it over as quickly as possible. He’ll use moves from the first phase 1, along with a few new ones, then spam combo them together as his health drops. Below 50% HP, Chronos will start calling in hourglass summons. Forget trying to kill them all and instead zone them using Cast while you focus on depleting Chronos’ health bar. Beyond this advice, repetition is your best bet for this phase. Accept death as a learning experience and come back ready to learn and before long Chronos will fall.

Chronos phases

The Chronos boss fight has two distinct phases with their own respective HP bars, similar to the final fight with Hades in the first game. The first takes place in the House of Hades in Tartarus, a fairly standard rectangle-shaped arena. For the second phase, Chronos ports Melinoe over to a giant circular clock face. 

Comparing the two, phase 1 is a taster session, though it might not feel like it; an opportunity for you to get to grips with his attacks and movement. Phase 1 also has two sub phases with the second starting when Chronos hits under 50% HP. The second sub phase is roughly the same as the first other than Chronos using more attacks in combos. Phase 2 ramps things up massively with new attacks, including hulking AoE moves, that are chained hard and fast, chewing into Melinoe’s health single hits, or at best, two.

Best weapons and Boons to beat Chronos in Hades 2

Though you can conceivably defeat Chronos using any of the Nocturnal Arms at Melinoe’s disposal, the Witch’s Staff is the one that will serve you best against the Titan of Time. It offers high value melee and ranged attacks. It’s fast thanks to solid attack speed. And with the right Boons, the staff can dish out big damage to get the fight over as quickly as possible.

The best Boons for the fight are a mixture of Cast enhancers, attack speed boosters, damage caps, and sprint speed buffs. Apollo’s Blinding Sprint increases sprint speed and inflicts Daze on foes, which should help avoid Chronos’ numerous attacks and slow minions. Hestia’s Soot Sprint is also a viable option to deal with the projectiles Chronos throws out as it causes sprinting to destroy most ranged attacks near you, while also inflicting Scorch on firing enemies.

Demeter’s Coarse Grit ensures you can’t take more damage per hit than the cap (determined by the Boon’s rarity) as long as you have six Earth Essence, useful for mitigating the damage of Chronos’ moves. An attack boost like Apollo’s Extra Dose, which gives a chance to hit two times is worth the investment as well. Zeus’ Storm Ring works well here as it casts lightning bolts on enemies inside your Omega Cast ring. Selene’s Total Eclipse is the best Hex Boon for this encounter. It casts a massive 1,000 damage blast in a target area, which really helps cut into Chronos’ health bar.

Hades 2 Chronos boss guide: in-game selection menu detailing different Boons of Hades.
Make sure to pick a Boon of Hades on the way to Chronos. Captured by VideoGamer.

Lastly, as you make your way through Tartarus, make sure you dip into a room with the winged hands symbol to get a special Boon from Hades. It’ll make the fight a little bit easier by slightly weakening Chronos. Of those on offer, Old Grudge is your best bet as it reduces Chronos’ starting HP by 20%. Otherwise, Deep Dissent, reduces the number of minions Chronos summons, reducing the chaotic nature of the fight.

As for Keepsakes, you’ll want to go for Knuckle Bones, which reduces Chronos’ health bar by 5% at the start of the fight and reduces the damage Melinoe takes by 15%. With upgrades you can increase the starting HP drain further. Otherwise, Luckier Tooth grants an extra life (technically restores up to 101 HP when you fall to 0 health), which will always come in handy in such a tough fight, especially deep into the second phase.

Hades 2 Chronos boss guide: in-game inventory detailing Zodiac Sand.
Your reward for besting Chronos. Captured by VideoGamer.

Chronos boss fight rewards

Beating Chronos gives you Zodiac Sand (or Z Sand), the reward for vanquishing the Guardian of Tartarus. Given its rarity, Zodiac Sand is used in only a couple recipes. It’s needed to concoct the Summoning of Historic Travails incantation at the cauldron in the Crossroads, which costs x1 Zodiac Sand and x3 Marble. It’s a nifty little upgrade that spawns a Learned Sage in the Crossroads who will give you a run down of previous runs, including builds and stats. Z Sand is also used to craft the Judgement Arcana card, which costs x1 Zodiac Sand and x50 Ash. Equipping the card activates three random inactive cards after defeating a Guardian boss.